Sunday, January 30, 2011

By the Grace of God

I can't believe we did it. With the help of amazing friends and amazing family we did it. We jumped the latest hurdle in our lives. We are successfully moved into our new home and we love it here but we miss our old neighbors. Isn't it funny how attached we can become to other people? We only moved 5 miles away but it feels like we will never see them again! Our new house is perfect for us. It is one story and today as I was unpacking and doing laundry I was overjoyed (almost to the point of tears) that I wasn't in pain from going up and down the stairs. Last night when Matt was not feeling well he could come to bed. He did not have to sleep in another room. I did not have to make the lonely climb to my bedroom, I could actually walk him to our room and we could sleep in the same bed. What a difference that makes. I am so thankful to everyone that helped us move and I am blessed beyond messure by a loving Father in Law that helped us afford to get into this house. By the Grace of God we have jumped another hurdle that once seemed impossible to us. We are happy.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

The Lies I Tell Myself

Do you ever just wish that things could be silent inside your head? I do. I spend a large majority of my time trying to silence the static within me. Tonight the static has been replaced by the "I'm so tired" thoughts. I'm so tired of it all. I'm tired of feeling like a failure. I'm tired of listening to the lies I tell myself. I'm tired of feeling like I'm on my own. Matt's dad, Step-Mom and sister came down from Utah on Friday. It has been nice to have them here. Matt did really well on Saturday and honestly I bet they were thinking we were crazy with all this talk of adema, kidney failure, congestive heart failure, shunt nephritis, spinal stenosis, etc.
If they were thinking that then their thoughts were most likely suprized today when the symtoms reared their ugly heads today. All day long they have been concerned about the swelling in Matt's legs and hands. They have been suprized about his lack of energy and profuse sweating. They have commented on the puffiness in his face and the slurring of his speech. They didn't realize how bad things have gotten. What's hard for me is that I see these things everyday and I have told people about the symptoms and how terrified I am when they show up but they don't realize what we live with. I can often find the good in our situation, I try very often to count our blessings but tonight I am just overwhelmed by the illness that has taken so much from us.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

I Haven't Lost My Mind...Yet

What can I say that hasn't been said was a hard day but that is okay. On a scale from 0-10 it was a 4 and that is better than my usual 0-2.
I have found that facing the morning is nearly impossible. If I am awake when Matt is getting ready to leave I am overcome with anxiety. It is not uncommon for me to try to bribe him to stay home. The only reason that I can find for this anxiety is my constant state of exhaustion. Matt goes to have labs and an x-Ray of his spine done tomorrow. I pray that they can find a reason for the numbness and pain in his arms and also a reason for his constant swelling.
We have good news however! We have found a one story house in our neighborhood and ward that we are going to put a deposit on this week. This gives me great peace of mind. I am so excited to be staying in the same ward. I just don't have it in me to start over somewhere else unless that somewhere is back in Utah. As much as I would love to move home, I am at home here as well. Things are changing so rapidly in our family that sometimes it is hard to seperate the good from the bad but we are seeing blessings through our trials. The most amazing part about all of this is that although I am constantly in meltdown mode, I haven't lost my mind...yet.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

So Much Happening

It has been quite a week here at the Garff house. Matt had another doctor's appointment and although there were no answers, there was progress. The doctor ordered a vast array of tests and an x-ray of Matt's spine. He had gained another 14pounds of water which is discouraging but the doctor seemed to be right on top of it. He perscribed more diuretics which seem to be helping a little more than the last batch. The doctor is trying to keep Matt out of the hospital and so he has said that Matt has to be in bed lying flat by 8pm everynight so that his diuretics can have the optimum effect. Apparently your kidneys have their best circulation when you are lying down. So this means that Matt get's home from work at 7pm, eats dinner and is off to bed at 8pm. This also means that evenings just got a whole lot harder for me. It has been good though because it forces me to call it a night a little earlier than I have been. We were able to go to church again this week. It has been 2 weeks in a row now, that has to be some kind of new record for us since the surgeries! We make it through sacrament meeting, I get the kids off to classes and then Matt and I can be found on the couch in one of the foyers. Neither Matt or I can sit for too long on the hard metal chairs. By the end of sacrament meeting Matt is spent. He sleeps the rest of the block on the couch and I refuse to leave him there alone. I figure we are where the Lord wants us to be and even though we cannot be in class, we are doing our best and so hopefully that counts. It's a good effort at justification if anything! Ivan started Flag Football this weekend and it was so good to have Matt there to watch. He gave Ivan little pep talks from time to time, it was priceless. I am so glad that we have these moments and they mean even more to us now than they ever would have. Claire had a meeting tonight called "8 Is Great" at our church. She will be turning 8 in 2011 which means that if she wants to she will be baptized a member of the LDS church. She is so excited! I couldn't believe that we were sitting in that meeting with her. Is it really possible that she will be 8 this year??? It was neat to see her so excited about it. I was having mixed feelings about it. I was so happy to see her excitement but I couldn't help but wonder if Matt would be well enough to baptize her or if it would be Grandpa instead. Thoughts like that sneak up on me and are most unwelcome but I am glad that the Lord is giving me the time I need to be able to think about those things and prepare for what might happen. We looked through a house this weekend that we may or may not rent. I have had a feeling of urgency regarding finding a new house and I am having a hard time deciding if it is just my anxiety or a prompting. This week I would like to go to the temple to seek further guidance. I would like to put a deposit down on the house if we are going to stay here but I want to make sure it is the right decision. It was so nice to imagine ourselves in a house where the laundry room is next to the bedrooms and there are no stairs to be conquered by my tired body or Matt's sick one. I hope it works out. I just feel all mixed up inside and I just wish that I could sort through all of this. We are together though and that is all that matters.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Rest for The Weary

Now that the holidays are over I suppose it is time to prepare for what's next. The hardest part about that is not knowing what comes next. I went out yesterday looking at houses and all I have to say is blah...
The thought of moving yet again is very depressing. What's even more depressing is that before Christmas there seemed to be an abundance of houses in our neighborhood and ward but now that the holidays are through they are scarce. I have to admit that once again I just want to go home. The problem is that home is more than one place for us right now. I can't imagine leaving the friends we have made here but I can't imagine staying and trying to keep going the way we have been going. I can honestly say I just want someone else to take charge and fix what we have messed up so badly.
We head to the doctor tomorrow for Matt. I am dreading it because we will either be told nothing or our fears will be confirmed that his shunt has to be replaced. We are just to exhausted for either answer.
I have thought so much lately (involuntarily) about everything that you can imagine. I am so tired of thinking but there is no way to shut it off. The worst thing that you can do to a person with depression is load them up with stress and leave them alone with their thoughts. I have been comforted by the compassion of others. Our bishop came to us weeks ago and asked if we would be alright if the ward fasted for us. All I could do was cry. This last Sunday everyone was fasting and praying for us. For those of you who do not know what this is, I will explain. As members of the LDS church we fast once a month on the first Sunday. We can fast at other times too but the first Sunday is designated for that purpose. It is a time when we do not eat or drink and we focus on nourishing our spirits. Many times we fast and ask the Lord for help with specific problems. Many also fast for clarity of mind or help in making difficult decisions. In this case, our ward was fasting for our little family. I was so touched that they would be willing to go to the Lord in supplication on our behalf. Perhaps it will help us to get the correct answers from the doctors tomorrow. Even if it does not move mountains for us, I know it has and will help bring us peace. We are being blessed and though the tears are many and the laughter sometimes seldom, the spirit is constant. We are being watched over by an army of angels both here and on the other side of the veil. I do not feel as though I rise well to the challenges that are being put before us. I do not feel as though I can endure these things but somehow I do. Somehow our family "keeps getting up" as one of my best friends would say. I do need to be better about staying on my knees (and maybe doing a little more praying???) on those days that I cannot get up. I am thankful for loved ones who take children when I am not well, for friends who do dishes when I just can't seem to get them done. Perhaps there is rest for the weary, when the weary have friends.